Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Spring Break: Mall of America style

Ever since I was a teenager and saw a show on the Travel Channel that featured the "Mall of America" I added it to my mental bucket list of places I want to visit someday. When we moved to Iowa, I found out it was only 3 1/2 hours away from where we live! I was so excited! So we planned a Spring Break trip there and it was awesome! 2016 was gonna be our year of fun and we definitely started it off right. This mall is just plain crazy. Its HUGE! It has a theme park literally inside of it with roller coasters and everything. Four stories of shopping galore. I mean, its so big that there are like two of every store. In the same mall. Just so you don't have to walk too far, haha. There is also an aquarium. And an indoor putting/golfing place. Huge movie theatre. And so much more. It was so awesome. We started off our trip with a day at Nickelodeon Universe. I loved it. It isn't too big so its not too exhausting. Its indoors so no heat or cold to worry about.  Or sunscreen required(which is a huge time saver when you have kids. Sunscreening everyone up seriously takes forever!) We also went on a day where they had a discount, so that was cool too. Everyone had so much fun. Ammon, however, did not like the log ride! Joey took the kids on that one...he said there were strange robots in this tunnel that creeped out Ammon. I kid you not, Ammon talked about those robots daily for like a month after(I am writing this from the future;) Another moment that stands out to me is when Ella thought she could handle one of those rides that take you straight up with your feet dangling..and then it drops you down and then you go up..over and over. Well, she didn't love it, but she survived it. It felt much higher than it looked she said :) But I do admire the girls bravery! Aubrey went on some crazy stuff with Joey too. I'm glad these kids are braver than I! Joey finally has someone to go on this stuff with haha. We also went to Rainforest Cafe for dinner that night which brought back Dallas memories with my mama. The kids just had the best day! We all did :) Luke was also a trooper. He's such a good baby. The next day we did the aquarium. The kids had a blast at the sting rays! Especially the younger three(Wesley and Cali in particular..our little animal lovers). Every time they would touch one they would shriek in excitement. I'll never forget their smiles and laughter. It was a great little mini-vacay for our family! And now I can finally say I've been there. And also now I can say I've been to Minnesota!

Took us a while to find this sign, but we did. And took a picture of it :)

I LOVE this picture! To be a kid again...

Proud of herself for going on the BIG swings...

The ride that Ella underestimated...lol

Lego girl

You gotta eat dip n dots at least once in your life. And then thats it, because of course, they are the biggest rip off on the planet ;)

The boys lives had just flashed before their eyes...

Luke mostly just enjoyed eating socks...

RC Cafe

They actually use real sparklers at this one! They had banned them in TX.
Not a fan of the indoor thunderstorms and apes uprising.

Farm girl

Rubiks girl

Aquarium fun

Might be my fave pic from the whole trip. Pure joy.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

One year more....

Happy 39th Birthday to the man of my dreams! One year until he is officially an old dude! ;) He's not very happy about that...hahaha. I really don't think 40 is old. I just tease. But it is kinda weird. To think we are both approaching our 40s? I mean, yikes, our 40s is when we will most likely become grandparents. Thats just INSANE y'all! Anyways, back to the topic of Joey and his birthday...the evening of his special day, we had dinner at Joe's crab shack. We had yummy crab and shrimp and all kinds of good stuff. And I don't know why we don't eat there more often..I mean, there is a playground! It was so cool to just send them outside while we waited for our food to arrive(it was like a date! Well, other than the fact that we did have Luke with us:) But yeah, we just talked while the kids played outside where we could see them from the window. Awesome. And double bonus: we just so happened to go when it was "kids night" so most of the kids ate for free! Score. We then came home and did a funny little Charlie Brown "party" and showered him with love and gifts. We sure love this guy. I couldn't do this parenting thing without him and the tremendous amount of help he gives me every single day. And the kids just adore him. He spends so much time with them and he is just a super cool and fun dad. We are all so blessed he is ours. We love you Joey!! Happy 39th Birthday! Enjoy your last year of youth ;)

Friday, March 18, 2016

Luke's Puppy Party

 As I mentioned in an earlier post, Joey had the perfect idea to do a puppy themed party for our little puppy ;) As much as Luke "borrowed" dog toys, tried to eat our dogs food and torment Zac this year, we thought this was a funny party idea for our little guy. I actually used some fondant for the first time in making a cake. I was pretty happy with how it turned out despite the fact that I don't have any fondant tools of any kind and just used some cookie cutters! Haha. Thankful to the internet to have a slight guide as to what I wanted to try and copy!  I also saw a cute idea to put Whoppers in a bowl to resemble dog food(not that Luke could eat any of them, but we enjoyed them;) The only problem really with this cake is that the frosting was not chocolate...and I usually do chocolate for the first cake so that they get really messy. I love messy cake baby pics! So Luke was fairly clean unfortunately, but I guess that was less work for me! He loved the cake and just ate it up. The ice-cream, not as much. A wee bit too cold for the kid. You'll see in the pics below;) The facial expressions were hilarious. We had so much fun celebrating a year with our sweet little Luke. The kids were so excited to watch him eat his cake and open his presents. I love how the kids come together when its birthday time. They always do so many nice things for each other and shower each other with hugs, homemade cards and love.